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Brian O'Driscoll anticipates 'very confrontational' Springboks

The Springboks struggled for consistency in the Rugby Championship but O’Driscoll knows they remain dangerous opponents for Ireland.

Jamie Heaslip and Damian de Allende playing for Ireland and South Africa
Jamie Heaslip and Damian de Allende playing for Ireland and South Africa

BRIAN O’DRISCOLL FEELS Ireland should expect a huge challenge in the first Test of the November internationals against South Africa.

The Springboks finished third behind Australia and winners New Zealand in the Rugby Championship, drawing twice with the Wallabies and running the All Blacks close in the final match in Cape Town.

But they also suffered a crushing 57-0 loss to Steve Hansen’s world champions in Albany in September, as Allister Coetzee’s team continues to struggle for consistency.

Nevertheless, retired Ireland great O’Driscoll knows his countrymen must brace themselves for a physically demanding contest in Dublin on Saturday.

“The Springboks are in a transitional period,” he told Omnisport.

“They’ve come off the back of a couple of big losses but they’re always powerful against Ireland. [They] take the game to them, they’re very physical. Very confrontational – the way they play their best rugby.

“So, [we can] expect a huge challenge. Hopefully Ireland can continue with some of their good form they’ve shown over the last year to 18 months.”

The Springboks won the series 2-1 when Ireland toured South Africa in June 2016.

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